Seniors should be exempt from school tax levy

Subject: Senior Citizens in Missouri
Should be exempt from paying the school Tax Levy

Larry Flinchpaugh, local author and Political Activist, has just recently requested Missouri Governor Parsons, state representative Bill Falkner of the 10th District, and Brenda Shields of the 11th District house to consider legislation that would exempt senior citizens from paying the school Tax levy.

Mr. Flinchpaugh emphasized the fact that he is Pro-Education and Pro-Teacher but most 65 year old seniors have not had children in school for at least 30 years. That should be long enough to support education that everyone agrees builds a strong community that is best for all of us.

Many seniors living mainly on social security and maybe a small pension are being forced to pay school taxes that reduce the quality of their life. They are no longer in the work force receiving a salary that keeps pace with inflation so must pay for this tax by reducing the amount reserved for other necessities. At some point, some may need to sell their homes just to be able to pay the school tax.

As an example, Mr. Flinchpaugh explains that he currently pays about $2,000 in yearly school taxes. The state of Missouri currently offers limited relief to people like him by offering a property tax credit if their income is no more than $30,000. (Form MO-PTC) That provides some relief but in this case he still ends up paying about $1700 in school taxes.

Mr. Flinchpaugh goes on to explain that it would be more equitable if seniors 65 years old or older paid zero school taxes as long as they made $50,000 or less per year.

This is keeping with the idea that, “the individuals who benefit the most from public service pay the most taxes and the amount of tax individuals pay should bear some relationship to their ability to pay.

Mr. Flinchpaugh makes the case that if you don’t agree that age 65 should be the cutoff date for paying school taxes, then consider 70 or maybe even 80 or 90. Most people would agree that at some point seniors should be exempt. It’s just a matter of deciding what age that should be.

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